FORT ATKINSON — Beaver Dam’s prep boys and girls cross country teams didn’t have any big goals in mind, nor did the Golden Beavers go in with hopes of making a big first impression or bursting onto the scene in style.

They just wanted to dip their toes in the water and gauge the temperature at their first Badger Challenge, an invitational meet bringing together all 16 teams from the Badger North and Badger South conferences.

“We really didn’t know what to expect,” said BD head coach Hans Gochenaur, whose team joined the Badger North this season. “I told the kids that in this first go-round, we just want to feel out what exactly this meet is and isn’t in the eyes of the teams that run in it.”

What it was for BD on Tuesday was a success.

Cade Ferron was the overall boys winner with a time of 16 minutes, 14 seconds on the 5,000-meter course, while Jada Donaldson (third, 19:39) and Paige White (10th, 20:36) both placed in the top 10 in the girls 5K, pacing Beaver Dam’s boys (sixth) and girls (third) to upper-half finishes.

“This was our first chance to truly size up (with the rest of the Badger Conference),” Gochenaur said. “I love where we’re at, but I’m cognitive of what we still need to do to compete in this new conference.

“Very excited for the rest of the season.”

With good reason, it seems.

Also making some noise for BD’s boys team was Gavin Czarnecki, who took 16th in 17:20.

“Cade won his race with very little threat from the competition. He’s truly a talented runner,” Gochenaur said. “And Gavin, yet inexperienced, is also running a great race.”

Gochenaur also heaped praise on sophomore Adam Chase, who took 32nd in 18:00.

“He continues to develop himself as one of the key leaders of our program,” Gochenaur said.

The time for Donaldson was her best of this season, helping pace a BD group that Gochenaur said shows “a lot of upside.”

BADGER CHALLENGE

BOYS 5K

Team scores: 1, Monona Grove, 1:26:32. 2, Monroe, 1:26:57. 3, Baraboo, 1:27:00. 4, Watertown, 1:28:16. 5, Portage, 1:29:27. 6, Beaver Dam, 1:29:29. 7, Waunakee, 1:29:53. 8, Sauk Prairie, 1:29:58. 9, Mount Horeb, 1:30:42. 10, Stoughton, 1:30:48. 11, Fort Atkinson, 1:31:38. 12, Madison Edgewood, 1:32:39. 13, DeForest, 1:33:43. 14, Milton, 1:34:35. 15, Oregon, 1:36:29. 16, Reedsburg, 1:38:05.

Winner: Cade Ferron, Beaver Dam, 16:14.

Beaver Dam: 1, Cade Ferron, 16:14. 16, Gavin Czarnecki, 17:20. 32, Adam Chase, 18:00. 47, Broden Boschert, 18:20. 104, Daniel Lugo, 19:35.

GIRLS 5K

Team scores: 1, Stoughton, 1:42:51. 2, Fort Atkinson, 1:43:36. 3, Beaver Dam, 1:49:19. 4, Monona Grove, 1:48:00. 5, Oregon, 1:49:18. 6, Waunakee, 1:50:24. 7, Watertown, 1:51:36. 8, Reedsburg, 1:52:18. 9, Baraboo, 1:54:17. 10, Sauk Prairie, 1:55:05. 11, Monroe, 1:55:42. 12, Milton, 1:55:46. 13, Mount Horeb, 1:57:28. 14, Portage, 1:58:38. 15, Madison Edgewood, 1:59:05. 16, DeForest, 2:04:11.

Winner: Lauren Haas, Fort Atkinson, 19:22.

Beaver Dam: 3, Jada Donaldson, 19:39. 10, Paige White, 20:36. 27, Rachel Uhrich, 21:43. 30, Hailey Stofflet, 21:52. 41, Morgan Kuhl, 22:29.

Hosted by Fort Atkinson

Follow Dan on Twitter @Danny_Larson_8.

Follow Dan on Twitter @Danny_Larson_8.